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Window Dressing by Florence Blum

Article Author Biography
Window Dressing by
Article Posted: 08/03/2021
Article Views: 264
Articles Written: 136
Word Count: 663
Article Votes: 0
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Window Dressing

Everyone can have a garden. Plants are as happy to be nurtured by urban dwellers in tight quarters as they are to be tended by those possessing acres. And miniature plants, with their ability to bring riches to bear on a small space… well, they turn house into home.

I will not forget trips to Europe where almost every balcony bore the marks of a gardener. Form, texture, color, scent—all punctuated the architecture. Hardscapes were softened by foliage from window boxes, and green thumbs seemed to have anointed every structure in sight.

Some of my favorite green-thumb “moves” back home draw on memories from those trips. When I fill my window boxes, I marvel at how miniature plants such as Heron’s Bill become the fluffy-cloud accompaniment to larger plants. These miniature plants rise up to add whimsy to a box that looks best when height, trailers, and cloud-like fillers work together. I leave the soil in each box to weather all seasons, encouraging perennials’ return. I know that Coleus, eager to please in ground-dug gardens, becomes a show-stopper at my window. Tiny Toes Coleus anchors my display with maroon leaf-centers. Maintaining proper moisture in its grow-box better than I can in garden beds, I feel like a born nurturer when I tend to this annual. Ease of care, not counting the boxes’ propensity to dry out, is part of the beauty of window gardening.

I line my boxes with landscape cloth with drainage holes. I reflect on my travels and know that if a gardener perched high above a cobblestone village square can create a display in this manner, then I can do the same in my own home, closer to ground-level.

Plants of various sizes can be mixed. But filling a window box exclusively with miniature plants is more magical. Much of what passersby find familiar in large size can be acquired in reduced form, and these miniature plants are natural charmers. I mix it up or go exclusively small. Both options bring pleasure. But then comes the question of what to plant.

In my four-season world, there is a progression to gardening, and this extends to miniature gardening in window boxes. I start out in spring with happy-faced violas. When their smiles turn downward, I replace them with plants that will perform well through fall. Mid-summer is the perfect time to add plants with woodier stems that can handle both lingering heat and the cold that is to come.

I intersperse herbs such as Rosemary—one of those strong-stemmed toughies—with flowering beauties, strictly ornamental. As a trailing specimen or in tiny-tree form, fragrant Rosemary adds depth to my window displays that I cannot achieve with flowering ornamentals alone. Then lavender. Who wouldn’t want lavender fields outside? By planting it in a window box, I transport myself to another part of the world through the scent of this plant that is easy to find in small form. At eye and nose level, on a scale I find manageable, I add beauty by engaging in miniature gardening at the window’s edge.

Once a city dweller with limited space, I now have land. I will not give up planting directly in garden beds, for I am curious about how much my groundcover can spread and how large my hostas can grow. But my window-box gardening is for a different purpose: to take the home I love and add to its charm by dressing its windows so that glimpses of color and soft scents pass my billowing curtains and enchant me… all the while, enchanting the loved ones around me.

Miniature Gardening offers a variety of accessories, fairies, garden tools & dollhouse furniture to create enchanting miniature landscapes for winter container plants or your yard. Story telling and imaginary fairy garden plants from 'Miniature Gardening' bring the playful kid out in all of us. Filled with intrigue and mystique each little miniature garden scene you create is a snapshot of such a dream.

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